DURHAM, N.C.—The honors continue to roll in for Duke heavyweight Jacob Kasper following his title-winning performance at the Southern Scuffle. One day after being named ACC Co-Wrestler of the Week, the Lexington, Ohio native has been named the Ronald McDonald House Charities Duke Student-Athlete of the Week.
Kasper, seeded fifth, won five straight matches at heavyweight--including three against nationally-ranked foes--to take the title at the Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He became the first Blue Devil to take home a Southern Scuffle crown and used wins over three top 15 opponents on his way to doing so.
Ranked 17th in the latest InterMat poll, he defeated eighth-ranked Denzel Dejournette of Appalachian State (9-7), 11th-ranked Austin Schafer of Oklahoma State (8-2) and sixth-ranked Michael Kroells of Minnesota (5-3) to earn the top spot on the podium and help Duke to a 13th-place team finish. Kasper is undefeated in four matches against ranked opponents this year and is an impressive 16-1 overall heading into a busy dual season. He has won all three tournaments he has entered this season.
The Blue Devils open the 2017 portion of their dual schedule Jan. 8 with a pair of matches on Long Island. Duke will wrestle Hofstra and LIU Post in Brookville, N.Y. The Blue Devils’ matches are set for 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., respectively. Duke’s first home dual in 2017 will come Jan. 17 against a tough Appalachian State squad. The Blue Devils will look to avenge their loss to the Mountaineers a year ago.